The use and abuse of money
|The use and abuse of money|
Intended for those who are already familiar with the outlines of Political Economy. Aims at working towards a consistent treatment of social difficulties, not by propounding any new doctrine, but by recognising that each of the conflicting doctrines has some elements of truth. The subject discussed is ' Capital in its Relation to Social Progress."
This book is intended for those who are already familiar with the outlines of the subject, and it is meant to help them to think on topics about which everybody talks. Primers and elementary manuals of economic science usually make a general assumption about human nature and take for granted that man is actuated by a single motive, — the desire for wealth. But if we examine in greater detail the personal qualities and various motives that influence conduct in regard to economic affairs, we shall obtain a more complete ex- planation of the observed phenomena, and we shall also be better able to bring our knowledge to bear on actual occurrences.
I cannot hope that those who read this Manual will agree with all the conclusions reached. It deals throughout with subjects on which there are many conflicting opinions, and it deals with them from a single and well-defined standpoint. It aims at working vi Preface towards a consistent treatment of social difficulties, not by propounding any new doctrine, but by recognising that each of the conflicting doctrines has some elements of truth, and by suggesting the questions How far, and within what limits is this opinion true?
The subject discussed is Capital in its Relation to Social Progress. When first entering on economic studies we are advised to lay aside all other matters, and confine our attention to wealth as something we can isolate from other social phenomena. And this is the simplest way to begin and the best way to go on for examining some problems, but not for examining all. It is necessary for some purposes to look at these matters in another way, and to consider an economic force, not apart from, but in its relation to the other sides of human life and interest. In the present day, when Capital dominates in so many directions, it is not uninteresting to select this particular factor and consider the part which Capital has played and its bearing on the material progress of the race. Thus we shall traverse a field that affords us an opportunity of surveying the strong positions occupied by modern socialists.
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